On the Road

On the Road

On the Road Part 1, Chapter 8 Summary & Analysis

Summary
Analysis
Sal says that everyone began planning a trip to the mountains. Sal got a call from Eddie, who happened to be in town and was looking for work. Dean took Sal and Eddie to “the markets,” where the two found jobs—Sal didn’t show up to work the next morning, though. Sal describes a huge party that he went to at Ray Rawlins’ house.
Sal coincidentally meets up with his road friend Eddie, who he thought had abandoned him for good. Sal gets set up with a steady job, but decides to shirk his new responsibilities in favor of partying.
Themes
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Friendship Theme Icon
After the party, Sal went to Carlo Marx’s house, where Carlo read him some of his poetry, in which he called the Rockies “papier-mâché,” and “the whole universe was crazy and cock-eyed and extremely strange.” Dean then arrived and announced that he was all set to divorce Marylou and marry Camille.
Carlo is another of Sal’s writer friends, whose strange poetry bears similarities to the untraditional style of the Beats. Dean plans to leave Marylou for Camille, but will he be able to commit himself to any one woman?
Themes
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Dean and Carlo sat down cross-legged on Carlo’s bed, stared at each other, and talked: “they began with an abstract thought, discussed it; reminded each other of another abstract point forgotten in the rush of events.” Sal sat all night and listened to the two talk back and forth, until Dean decided to “stop the machine,” (i.e. stop talking) even though Carlo didn’t want to stop. Sal went back to his apartment.
Dean and Carlo have a close, but somewhat crazy, friendship, literally staying up all night talking about all sorts of things in a manic desire to share each other’s thoughts completely. Carlo is annoyed when Dean stops early, hinting that their friendship might not be perfect.
Themes
Society, Norms, and Counterculture Theme Icon
Friendship Theme Icon